Best Books Ever

The best books ever, as voted on by the general Goodreads community.

Note to librarians: do not edit this list's description.
1800

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3.90 avg rating — 26,903 ratings
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1802

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4.11 avg rating — 20,955 ratings
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1803

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4.15 avg rating — 17,142 ratings
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1804

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4.48 avg rating — 84,871 ratings
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1805

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4.48 avg rating — 13,560 ratings
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1806

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really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 21,948 ratings
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1806

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3.81 avg rating — 260,375 ratings
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1808

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4.34 avg rating — 271 ratings
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1809

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4.16 avg rating — 24,649 ratings
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1810

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4.16 avg rating — 42,719 ratings
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1810

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4.19 avg rating — 50,187 ratings
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1810

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3.86 avg rating — 19,745 ratings
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1813

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4.53 avg rating — 3,475 ratings
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1814

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3.85 avg rating — 157,643 ratings
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1815

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4.26 avg rating — 23,298 ratings
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1816

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3.84 avg rating — 42,227 ratings
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1816

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4.06 avg rating — 41,840 ratings
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1816

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4.17 avg rating — 31,062 ratings
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1819

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4.01 avg rating — 20,596 ratings
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1820

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4.18 avg rating — 54,295 ratings
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1821

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4.19 avg rating — 14,225 ratings
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1822

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3.77 avg rating — 61,360 ratings
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1823

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4.21 avg rating — 92,834 ratings
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1824

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3.85 avg rating — 13,649 ratings
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1825

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3.82 avg rating — 25,984 ratings
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1826

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3.91 avg rating — 26,968 ratings
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1826

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3.98 avg rating — 31,935 ratings
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1826

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3.81 avg rating — 112,779 ratings
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1829

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4.21 avg rating — 18,216 ratings
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1830

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4.65 avg rating — 65 ratings
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1831

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4.08 avg rating — 46,904 ratings
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1831

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3.58 avg rating — 13,109 ratings
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1833

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3.88 avg rating — 12,368 ratings
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1834

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4.22 avg rating — 5,248 ratings
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1835

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3.87 avg rating — 57,385 ratings
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1836

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4.17 avg rating — 46,286 ratings
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1837

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4.06 avg rating — 14,434 ratings
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1838

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4.13 avg rating — 54,134 ratings
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1838

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4.11 avg rating — 55,763 ratings
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1840

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4.15 avg rating — 56,928 ratings
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1841

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3.70 avg rating — 32,890 ratings
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1841

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4.36 avg rating — 40,707 ratings
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1841

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4.19 avg rating — 25,794 ratings
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1844

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3.86 avg rating — 298,218 ratings
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1845

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3.71 avg rating — 1,628 ratings
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1845

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4.25 avg rating — 59 ratings
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1847

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3.95 avg rating — 65,842 ratings
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1848

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3.86 avg rating — 49,260 ratings
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1849

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3.73 avg rating — 24,871 ratings
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1849

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3.99 avg rating — 82,621 ratings
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1851

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4.07 avg rating — 10,729 ratings
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1851

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4.02 avg rating — 5,062 ratings
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1851

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3.80 avg rating — 38,110 ratings
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1851

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4.16 avg rating — 7,858 ratings
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1851

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4.11 avg rating — 42,316 ratings
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1856

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4.11 avg rating — 27,690 ratings
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1857

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4.10 avg rating — 79,226 ratings
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1857

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3.84 avg rating — 335 ratings
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1859

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3.60 avg rating — 15,110 ratings
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1860

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4.10 avg rating — 348 ratings
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1861

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4.06 avg rating — 107,103 ratings
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1862

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4.59 avg rating — 212 ratings
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1863

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3.73 avg rating — 54,036 ratings
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1864

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3.92 avg rating — 75,512 ratings
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1865

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4.11 avg rating — 90,182 ratings
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1865

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4.13 avg rating — 11,184 ratings
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1867

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3.70 avg rating — 31,435 ratings
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1868

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4.40 avg rating — 34,578 ratings
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1868

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4.06 avg rating — 26,902 ratings
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1870

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4.37 avg rating — 27,545 ratings
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1870

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3.99 avg rating — 1,267 ratings
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1872

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4.10 avg rating — 82,592 ratings
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1873

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4.03 avg rating — 25,856 ratings
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1873

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3.79 avg rating — 80,540 ratings
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1873

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3.97 avg rating — 86,508 ratings
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1876

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4.10 avg rating — 34,960 ratings
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1877

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3.93 avg rating — 32,950 ratings
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1877

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4.11 avg rating — 62,924 ratings
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1877

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4.07 avg rating — 29,491 ratings
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1880

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3.89 avg rating — 39,635 ratings
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1881

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3.92 avg rating — 53,699 ratings
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1881

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3.95 avg rating — 24,103 ratings
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1881

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3.93 avg rating — 52,221 ratings
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1884

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4.06 avg rating — 75,355 ratings
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1884

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3.88 avg rating — 21,506 ratings
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1886

by
4.03 avg rating — 91,950 ratings
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1887

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3.51 avg rating — 49,135 ratings
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1887

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3.80 avg rating — 95,974 ratings
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1889

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4.27 avg rating — 5,026 ratings
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1890

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4.35 avg rating — 97,690 ratings
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1891

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4.33 avg rating — 87 ratings
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1892

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4.21 avg rating — 45,256 ratings
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1893

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4.23 avg rating — 28,484 ratings
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1894

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4.29 avg rating — 26,885 ratings
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1895

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3.87 avg rating — 100,141 ratings
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1895

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4.24 avg rating — 34,354 ratings
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1897

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4.06 avg rating — 273,361 ratings
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1897

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3.75 avg rating — 17,245 ratings
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1897

by
3.48 avg rating — 36,976 ratings
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1900

by
4.07 avg rating — 59,004 ratings
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44,390 books · 161,038 voters · list created May 14th, 2008 by Michael Economy (votes) .
6421 likes · 
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Michael 478 books
269 friends
Otis 847 books
1842 friends
Dean 70 books
3 friends
Ryan 22 books
21 friends
Vincetastic 291 books
10 friends
The Crimson Fucker 421 books
206 friends
Cynthia 3221 books
253 friends
rivka 2758 books
243 friends

More voters…


Comments (showing 1-50 of 4,000) (4000 new)


message 1: by Joan (new)

Joan proof that the truth is not democratic =/

seriously, jane austen? errughhh.


message 2: by Marla (new)

Marla this is the second list--worst books was the first--and i'm done. this is madness. i mean, how many mormons congregated to vote the book of mormon as a top 100 book? really?


message 3: by Adam (new)

Adam Floridia It's also flawed in that the same book with a different cover might be on the list twice in drastically different places (see Catch-22 or Lord of the Flies).

At least Mockingbird is #1, though.


message 4: by Chris (new)

Chris these comments are funny!




message 5: by Amber (new)

Amber This list is a joke!


message 6: by Elisabeth (new)

Elisabeth I think you people need to just relax!!! I think "you're just too high strung" and eventually the "strain will be more than you can bear."


message 7: by Fire-fish (new)

Fire-fish May be there should be a list of "Books for Mormones" on this website..


message 8: by David (last edited Sep 08, 2008 12:59PM) (new)

David Regarding the message from Labsjoao, you can search for a book without leaving the first page by entering the name in the "find/add books to list" box. It's pretty easy that way. A much more serious flaw is what Adam said. If the same book it in several different spots, and not all of the votes for, say, Catch-22 are going to the same Catch-22, then these rankings really aren't worth much. Overall, there are several pretty odd choices here, such as the Mormon book being #3, but most of the list seems pretty good to me.


message 9: by [deleted user] (new)

where is the amber spyglass?



message 10: by kristen (new)

kristen I was thinking the same thing ;-)


message 11: by Georgia (new)

Georgia i agree the amber spyglass is awesome


message 12: by Dana (new)

Dana Stabenow Make your own list. Satisfy your inner proselyte!


message 13: by Alex (new)

Alex Murphy hmm this makes me question what is my favorite book?


message 14: by Svetoslava (new)

Svetoslava Dimitrova I have to read more, obviously.....


message 16: by Bruce (new)

Bruce I'm not going to argue with the Book of Mormon--either all religious texts are valid for a list like this, in which case it's merely interesting, or all religious texts should be off the list, in which case there's a whole other set of things to worry about.

The one that gets my goat is Twilight (number eleven at the time of this comment). Are you people kidding? Stephanie Meyer in a list of the Best Books Ever? Fut the Whack? It's the EMO of literature! It's pop garbage with no depth! It's above inarguable classics like Crime and Punishment! That's like arguing that My Chemical Romance is better music than Bach! This place is bonkers!


message 17: by Brian (new)

Brian I like how "The Brothers K" is "better" here than Dostoyevsky's "The Brothers Karamazov." What a joke!


message 18: by Molly (new)

Molly Ah the stupidity of lists. You'll notice the Best and Worst lists are almost identical.


message 19: by M (new)

M I was just going to say that. Always important to remember when you're writing - the best line according to some will be what others despise, etc.


message 20: by Josef (new)

Josef Miyasato Bruce wrote: "I'm not going to argue with the Book of Mormon--either all religious texts are valid for a list like this, in which case it's merely interesting, or all religious texts should be off the list, in w..."

Yeah, but I've noticed that since these lists allow opinions from every Goodreads member, there will never be a standard. The only population that counts here is the population of Goodreads members, so maybe there's just not a lot of people on Goodreads who enjoy quality literature.


message 21: by Amy (new)

Amy extremely well written


message 22: by Todd (new)

Todd Best and worst list are certainly not meant to be definitive. Best and worst are so subjective. They are merely meant to elicit conversation and thought which they obviously have done. But the Book of Mormon? Come on. Really?


message 23: by Josef (new)

Josef Miyasato Todd wrote: "Best and worst list are certainly not meant to be definitive. Best and worst are so subjective. They are merely meant to elicit conversation and thought which they obviously have done. But the B..."


Yes, the Book of Mormon. I've read it 13 times. There is not one other book that's changed my life more significantly. Millions have read that book and will testify to the same thing. And literally hundreds have died because of that book. It's because of these facts that we who love that book place it above all others on the list.
I love literature. I've studied the Brothers Karamazov with a dozen other philosphy students. I've wept over Les Miserables. I've fallen in love with words and wonders, yet I have yet to find a book to offer more to me than the Book of Mormon.
So yes, really, The Book of Mormon.


message 24: by Josef (new)

Josef Miyasato Matt wrote: "The War of the Worlds"

My nine year old nephew just finished that book! I'm so proud.


message 25: by Josef (new)

Josef Miyasato Molly wrote: "Ah the stupidity of lists. You'll notice the Best and Worst lists are almost identical. "

Yes, and I have more of a problem with the Worst Book List than this. People who put great literature as the worst books ever written seem do be doing so simply because they may have had pain getting through the book and they think that good literature should simply entertain. What a sad state to be in. These are the same people who put Twilight on this list. These are the people who would rather call Friends the best TV show and would put a show like Freaks and Geeks on the Worst Show ever list.


message 26: by Josef (new)

Josef Miyasato Elisabeth wrote: "I think you people need to just relax!!! I think "you're just too high strung" and eventually the "strain will be more than you can bear.""

Very Good Advice. This is just a list someone made up, somewhere in the world. It holds as much weight as you give it.



message 27: by Paige (new)

Paige I agree, if you don't like the fact the poorly written books are on a best books ever list than I think you care to much. On the other hand it's not bad to defend what you think is a good book or a bad book but let's not get carried away.


message 28: by Todd (new)

Todd Josef -- I certainly didn't mean to be offensive or to put you on the defensive. It was only a poor attempt at making an ironic statement. This is why I usually keep my opinions out of these discussion threads. I completely love your comment about Friends compared to Freaks and Geeks. As a high school English teacher, I see students turned on by so much trash, but, as they say, one person's trash is another person's treasure. I'm just glad they are reading.


message 29: by Josef (new)

Josef Miyasato Todd wrote: "Josef -- I certainly didn't mean to be offensive or to put you on the defensive. It was only a poor attempt at making an ironic statement. This is why I usually keep my opinions out of these disc..."

I didn't mean to make you think I was upset. My respect to you for being a high school teacher. Yeah, even if they think that Stephen King is the greatest living writer, as long as they're reading they've got something going for them.



message 30: by Arlene (last edited Dec 09, 2008 02:54PM) (new)

Arlene Sanders Dear Otis,

Your list is great! I've read only about 50 of these books, so my vote is not exactly fair. But of the 50 I've read, my vote -- far and away above the other 49 -- would be for:

JOHNNY GOT HIS GUN by Dalton Trumbo

This is the most powerful antiwar novel I ever read. And readers be warned, this book is NOT for the faint of heart!

Otis, I wish you would think of using the influence of Goodreads, which is becoming a large and potentially influential group, to suggest that the new administration -- Barack Obama and his Cabinet, especially leaders in the Department of Defense -- read this book.

All best,

Arlene

www.ArleneSanders.com

Author of TIGER BURNING BRIGHT
Jefferson Press, 2009



message 31: by Nick (new)

Nick If California Proposition 8 were published, would it be number 2 on the list?



message 32: by Endre (new)

Endre Barath Otis, this is a great idea to find the best book. I have to think about this in more detail to narrow it down in my own mind.Too bad we can not vote for three or four and then narrow down the list. Followed by another vote on the shorter list....BTW it is unfortunate that some people do not have any class and manners in how they express their thoughts. Is there a moderator that could eliminate thevulgar comments as above?


message 33: by Leslie (new)

Leslie Twilight is number 4? Give me a friggin break people!!! Entertaining? Slightly. A classic piece of literature? Absolutely not!


Hippo dari Hongkong Les Miserable! Les Miserable! Les Miserable!

Did I mention Les Miserables?


message 35: by John (new)

John hard to decide


message 36: by Paul (new)

Paul The Book of Mormon? You gotta be kidding me. I'd put "Where the Wild Things Are" as being more "literature" than that book.

I agree, this list is loaded and biased.




message 37: by Bee (new)

Bee why are none of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials Trilogy on here?


message 38: by Natalie (new)

Natalie Marla wrote: "this is the second list--worst books was the first--and i'm done. this is madness. i mean, how many mormons congregated to vote the book of mormon as a top 100 book? really?"

nicola wrote: "proof that the truth is not democratic =/

seriously, jane austen? errughhh."


Yes, what's with the Mormon thing? Are they the only ones who have time to READ these days?


message 39: by Richard (last edited Dec 13, 2008 11:31AM) (new)

Richard Fulgham Only in the USA would "the most popular" be confused for "the best". How many people have read Philip Roth's "Portnoy's Complaint" about masturbation? Compare that to how many people have read Thoreau's "Walden".


message 40: by Tori (new)

Tori Where are the rest of the good books? I don 't even see most of my favorite books on here. And the book of Mormon is number one? I really don't think so.


message 41: by Jason (last edited Dec 15, 2008 12:21PM) (new)

Jason i think the book of mormon thing must be some kind of in joke...i mean it only takes a little organization and you could theoretically get anything put up in the number 1 position...

and why does 'to kill a mockingbird' in position 2 have more votes than position 1?...


message 42: by Larry (last edited Dec 15, 2008 04:21PM) (new)

Larry If this list is any indicator, it appears that a lot of people on Goodreads don't read very serious literature. Plus, the Book of Mormon, come on, seriously, you might as well put Dianetics up there too.


message 43: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth If you're groaning or confused about The Book of Mormon being at #1, I ask - have you ever read it? It's a fair question... I do agree w/the Twilight comment though - UGH. But hellooo, Farenheit 451 should be way further up the list, says I...


message 44: by Becca (new)

Becca I agree. I think every fair-minded reader here will agree that you have to actually read something before deciding on its merit. And no one would argue with someone esteeming The Bible or The Quran or any other religious text if it really moved them. Why should The Book of Mormon be any different? Sometimes what makes a book "Best" is how powerfully it impacts you. So what if it's religious or spiritual in nature?


message 45: by Jade (last edited Dec 16, 2008 04:35PM) (new)

Jade I agree with Becca and Elizabeth.

Endre:Is there a moderator that could eliminate the vulgar comments as above?

I don't see anything wrong with the Book of Mormon being in the list. I don't think people need to be so rude about it. Most people that have criticized it obviously haven't read it.

Also, I think that it is right to put Twilight on the list. People have read other good books and think that those books should be on the list, but have you ever read Twilight? Probably not.

People need to respect other peoples opinions. And people who don't, are just rude and immature.



message 46: by Greg (new)

Greg Wow, some of these folks need to read more. Or age more. Or go to school, or something. I mean, really.


message 47: by Jazmine (new)

Jazmine Twilight is the best book I've read in my entire life! It is awemazing! I love the whole saga and Edward Cullen!


message 48: by Kirsten (last edited Feb 25, 2009 03:25AM) (new)

Kirsten I'm annoyed with Twilight. Extremely

And where is The Shack?


message 49: by Lorena (new)

Lorena Walker I am rooting for "The Perks of Being a Wallflower."
I can understand how "The Book of Mormon," is on that list but before The Bible? No way...


message 50: by Laura (new)

Laura I hope my novel doesn't end up on this list!


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